Growing up, we enjoyed going out on my dad's boat and having a low key fairly inexpensive afternoon on the water. Time and gas prices have changed the 'inexpensive' aspect of recreational boating.

Seems like when you don't have a boat, it's a great idea to get one...until you actually get one and realize how expensive they are to take out. With the prices of fuel skyrocketing to higher than ever prices, is it worth actually owning a boat? Or is renting a better option?

Looking at Boat Trader.com, I noticed brand new 2022 boats are the same prices as brand new 2022 vehicles. A brand new 2022 17' Crestliner 1750 Fish Hawk is going for over $55,000. I will say that this is a sharp looking boat and is loaded with lots of bells and whistles. I'm not saying every boat is that price, but in this particular situation that's what we're going with.

Boat
Casper Marine & Recreation via boattrader.com
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The estimated monthly payment for this particular boat is $367/mo. That doesn't include insurance, fuel for the boat and truck, storage and costs for maintenance. With gas prices like they are, it will cost over $200 every time you take the boat out just for fuel. If you take the boat out multiple days per month, that ends up being a pretty hefty price for a hobby.

If you're family is like mine, having a boat and using it becomes more of a hassle and headache. More than likely you won't use the boat nearly as often as you think, but yet you still have to pay for it. So, instead of buying a boat is it worth your time to just rent one?

Here's a boat rental example

Alvoca Resort has boat rentals that start at $300/half day + fuel, for an economy pontoon or $400/half day + fuel, for bigger boats. Most of the boats they have for rent hold up to 12 people. If you split the costs, the per person price is pretty cheap.

boat rental
alcovaresort.com
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So if you break it down...

Own A Boat: $367/ month + fuel every time you take it out (boat + truck) + insurance + monthly storage (if you don't have room at your home) = $700 - $800/month

Rent A Boat: $400 + Fuel (boat only) = $500 / # of people that chip in

Owning a boat is great if you're going to use it enough for it to be worth it. If not, it may be worth your time to look into boat rentals. There are even options in some places for an 'airbnb of boats' like boatsetter, get my boat and click & boat where people offer up their boat for you to rent.

If you're going to buy a boat, Casper has many great boat dealerships that can help you get started. If you're looking to rent a boat, it's certainly an option to help you get your water fix and save some of your cash.

Either way, enjoy the great Wyoming summer, have fun and be safe.

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